The number of new daily coronavirus cases soared to record-breaking heights for the second consecutive day on Thursday with 375 cases, topping Wednesday’s 281.
Disclosure of the cases comes as outbreaks continue throughout central and eastern Oregon. Umatilla County, with a population of just under 78,000 residents, had the highest case count on Thursday with 88. The county in eastern Oregon averaged 40 cases per day in the last week for the second highest count in the state behind Multnomah County and just ahead of Washington County, which has 500,000 more residents.
The record case count underscores the need for Oregonians to continue practicing physical distancing and wear masks as infections spread in rural and urban areas alike, the Oregon Health Authority said on Twitter. The increase becomes even more problematic heading into the Fourth of July weekend, when social gatherings and travel could increase the spread of infection.
When asked in a press conference Thursday whether people should cancel their holiday weekend plans, Dr. Paul Cieslak, the state’s medical director for communicable diseases, responded, “Absolutely.”
Where the cases are by county: Clackamas (22), Columbia (1), Crook (1), Deschutes (9), Douglas (2), Jackson (15), Jefferson (8), Josephine (8), Lane (15), Lincoln (3), Linn (3), Malheur (16), Marion (32), Morrow (8), Multnomah (64), Tillamook (1), Umatilla (88), Union (5), Wasco (2), Washington (67) and Yamhill (5).
New fatalities: A 73-year-old woman in Klamath County was Oregon’s 209th victim from COVID-19, state officials reported. She had underlying health conditions. The location of her death is still being confirmed.
Prevalence of infections: State officials reported that 7,683 people had been tested since Wednesday, with 352 coming back positive. That’s a positivity rate of 4.6%.
Who got infected: State officials reported 361 new cases since yesterday among the following ages: 0-9 (13); 10-19 (37); 20-29 (93); 30-39 (74); 40-49 (55); 50-59 (47); 60-69 (17); 70-79 (15); 80 and older (8); unknown (2).
Who’s in the hospital: The state on Thursday reported that 116 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in Oregon, two less than on Wednesday. However, hospitalizations continue to increase on average statewide. Hundreds of ICU beds and ventilators are still available.
Since it began: Oregon has now reported 9,264 confirmed or presumed coronavirus cases and 209 deaths since the pandemic began. In all, 250,657 people have been tested in the state.
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